Sekanjabin – The Persian Alcohol-free Drink

I have only recently come across this drink and I thought I knew all the non-alcoholic drinks going. This one comes from Iran and is an ancient drink. Sekanjabin (don’t ask me to pronounce it). It is one of the oldest Iranian drink concepts around. It is made of honey and vinegar and its name translates as honeyed vinegar. I know what your thinking, that sounds a) disgusting b) strange as hell. And hold on, you are right.

But so did Salted Caramel, so hang on.

In the 10th Century, a physician named Ibn Sina wrote a book, Canon of Medicine which lists the medicinal benefits of sekanjabin. Another physician described it as a popular elixer of ancient Persia. Discussing the positives of it such as easing indigestion and other “body imbalances”. These same types of syrups are presented again in the Manuscrito Anonimo, an Arabic Cookbook of 13th Century Andalusia. The beverage, sharbat-e sekanjabin, was used medicinally from ancient times through the middle ages and is still today all of Persia.

Sekanjabin is usually served in summer, sometimes seasoned with mint.

Traditional Sekanjabin

  1. Take one part of strong vinegar and mix it with two parts of sugar, and cook all this until it takes the form of a syrup.
  2. Add 3 to 4 tbspns to a glass of cold water (try 1 or 2 tbspns first) and top with ice.



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